Hello, friend! Happy weekend once again. I just wanted to write a quick word of encouragement for those feeling overwhelmed by the pressures of the season, especially parents. Sometimes it’s helpful to know that other folks aren’t giving into the pressure to overspend their time, energy, and money on the holidays while trying to raise their young families. If it helps, our family is keeping it simple on the gifts and spending more time sharing the magical experiences of Christmastime with our children.
We have another big move coming up next summer, so we are being mindful of how much “stuff” we accumulate to drag around with us. Instead of showering our children with an excessive amount of presents, we are limiting ourselves to a few gifts for each child from us. Every year we think we haven’t bought enough or done enough, then, when we begin to place presents under the tree on Christmas Eve, we realize that we have given them more than small children know what to do with. To add to what we get them, friends and family send them things. It ends up being so much stuff that we feel it actually takes away from the meaning of Christmas, a season for giving and being grateful.
Our childhood Christmases, mine and Ben’s, were much simpler than the show we put on for our kids today. We didn’t receive an insane amount of gifts, nor do we even remember many of the things our parents carefully and thoughtfully selected for us. What I remember about Christmas morning is giggling with my siblings as we anticipated the gift sharing to begin. I remember scent of my mother’s quiche baking in the oven as we cuddled on the couch. In the days leading up to Christmas, my mother would bake an assortment of cookies and quick breads to deliver to our friends and neighbors. What fun it was to drive around and look at Christmas lights! These are the kinds of memories I hope our children will have. They are simple memories that only require a little time and thoughtfulness on our part as parents.
There are seasons in life to go over-the-top and seasons to just keep it simple and save your sanity. I hope those who are in a simple season feel they can relax and enjoy the ride, resting in the peace of mind that doing just that actually helps loved ones enjoy it more, too.
Wishing you a very happy holiday season full of happy memories that last a lifetime!